The natural hair movement is more alive than its ever been. Not since the afro craze of the 1970s has so many Black women embraced their natural tresses.
Celebs like Brandy and Raven-Symone have gone with the natural look from time to time, while the likes of Janelle Monae and Tracey Ellis Ross have built brands around their non-relaxed hair. ESSENCE magazine even took the movement to new heights with its recent multi-cover celebration of natural beauty with cover girls Solange, Erykah Badu and Ledisi. With all the natural love going on these days, it seems women of color are being encouraged more and more to ditch the relaxer and weaves and embrace their God-given locks.
But what would you do if your man said he hated your natural hair?
That’s what one guest says her husband said on the “Steve Harvey Show.” In fact, Love said that when her husband saw her natural ‘fro for the first time, he ran out the house and asked if it was a wig, and if so, to take it off. Expectedly, Love’s self-esteem took a hit.
“No wife wants to hear that her husband isn’t attracted to her natural beauty...it’s makes me feel bad,” Love told Steve Harvey sitting next to her husband.
“I understand the natural hair takes time to grow out. It wasn’t something I was used to,” her husband said. “I just wish there were more things she can do with it, more styles so that it can be more appealing. There aren’t many styles she can do with her hair like this.”
While his grievances may be trivial at best, this opens up a sometimes overlooked conversation about the difficulty in some Black men having to catch up with the now accelerating natural hair train. Oftentimes when it comes to natural hair, people are quite politically correct, fearing one’s criticism being lumped as insensitive or, for non-Black people, even racist.
Interestingly enough, Love told Harvey she somewhat finds herself responsible for her husband’s struggle to embrace her new look.
“I feel like I’m to blame for this because I’ve been wearing weaves since I could talk, and he’s never really seen me in this state,” she said, admitting that she doesn’t wear her natural hair as much as she’d like because of how her husband feels about it.
While in a perfect world, men would love their women no matter what’s on their head, it would be naive for women to expect every man to catch up with the today’s new hair curve. In the same way in which it’s a process for many Black women to find the strength and courage to go natural, it’s just as much of a process for the men they date. While men are often referenced as proponents for the more natural look - no makeup, no lipstick, no weave - some of their behavior and dating patterns say otherwise. To undo the century-old perception that beauty revolves around long and bone-straight hair, it will take far more time than the short few years the natural hair movement has taken form.
With that said, however, it’s important for women to feel beautiful - and be loved - no matter what choice of hairstyle she chooses to rock. It’ll just take a little more time for some men to catch on. But if a man can only see the beauty in a woman based on her hair, then maybe he’s not what she should be looking for in the first place.
The opinions expressed in this article of solely of the author and do not reflect the thoughts of Centric TV or BET Networks.
Watch the "Steve Harvey Show" segment below:
(Photo: Simon Watson/Getty Images)